Alex Neil has heaped praise on Jayden Stockley after he scored his first goal of the season for Preston North End.
The 26-year-old scored his first goal of the season in Saturday’s 3-1 victory over Huddersfield Town, bringing an end to a 14-game goal drought.
On paper it’s been a frustrating start to the season for the former Exeter City striker, but the Preston manager was keen to sing the striker’s praises by saying that making an impact in the Championship is about more than just goals.
Speaking after the game, as quoted by the Lancashire Evening Post, Neil said: “I was delighted for Jayden to see him score.
“Strikers feed off goals and the big fella has been great for us in the last three games.
“He was so unselfish in his play in the previous two games, so to see him score was brilliant.
“Jayden will admit that at the start of the season he found it difficult.
“On merit, based on what he has done in training and in bounce games, he has come back in for the last three matches and been an absolute monster for us.
Should Jayden Stockley be scoring more goals for Preston North End?
“He’s bashed up the back line of the opposition, kept the ball alive, won headers and done very well.”
Neil added: “There is much more to come from Jayden – he hasn’t played a lot of games at this level when you think about it.
“He deserves huge amount for what he has done recently and he’s playing with plenty of confidence.”
Jayden Stockley will be a relieved man after getting his first goal of the season, but it’s best to keep things in perspective.
The striker has played an important role in Preston’s outstanding start to the season which has seen them move up to second in the Championship.
While Stockley hasn’t necessarily been hot on the goal trail, there’s no doubting what he’s contributed to the team as a focal point of the attack.
The 26-year-old does a lot of the ugly work for those around him as he holds up play and wins flick-ons to those around him, and for that his role in the team must not be played down.
However there’s no doubting that if the striker can add a few more goals to his game, he’ll be getting the best of both worlds.